It’s that time of year. We’ve had a few hard frosts. Most of my raised beds are covered in a thick layer of leaves and barley straw. Some hardier vegetables are sticking up here and there – scallions, Brussels sprouts, a few radishes.Raised bed ready for winter | Horseradish & Honey Blog

It wasn’t the best growing season. Lots and lotsĀ and lots of rain helped some plants, hurt others. Tomatoes took their time ripening this year but, man, they were SO good. I had a bumper crop of cucumbers, which is rare due to cucumber beetles. And the peppers – they grew and grew and grew until the first hard frost hit. My favorite ‘Trombetta di Albenga’ squash grew like a champ as usual.

On the other hand, beans broke my heart this year; harvests were paltry and none of the plants produced like last year.Greens, in general, were not happy with all the rain. Flea beetles got to the bok choy seedlings. I had a great spring beet harvest but some animal – rabbit? – came through and ate the fall beet seedlings.

Each year, I try to convince myself I need a break from the garden in late fall and through the winter. In reality, I would be happy if I lived somewhere that allowed me to garden outside throughout the year. The garden is my place of solace, it’s my therapy, it’s where I learn about – and even challenge – myself, it’s my stress reliever, it’s my happy place, it’s so many things to me. You’ll still find me wandering about in the yard and garden this time of year, even with snow on the ground. But my heart and thoughts are already longing for spring 2019.